I follow a lot of wildlife pages on Facebook, and this time of year, you can count on a few things for folks to begin complaining about. You'll always know when the mosquitoes and the black flies hit, when poison ivy is in full spread, and you also start seeing photos of everyone's rash from Brown Tail Moth Caterpillars.

Every year, those little jerks rear their ugly little heads, and start wreaking havoc on everyone. You'd think somehow in a pandemic, Mother Nature would realize we just need a break. Can't ticks take a vacation? Can't there be a virus that kills nothing but black flies? Why are we singled out by Nature?

But in the last four or five weeks, I've seen a pretty substantial rise in the number of posts and photos of brown tail moth caterpillar rash. I had it once, and that was more than enough for me. As it is, I'm deathly allergic to poison ivy, so any time I start to itch on that kind of level, I start to freak out a little bit.

It makes you wonder in the divine order of things in some ways. I understand why some animals exist. They have practical functions. Bats are weird, but they eat a LOT of bugs. Cows give us milk, yadda yadda. But what actual real purpose in the ecosystem does a mosquito, or tick, or brown tail moth caterpillar actually serve?

We may never know. Frankly, I don't care. All these nasty little critters cause lots of harm to people and animals alike. But just once, if there was ever a year where we needed the catastrophic die-off of some little rash-giving, disease-spreading freaks of nature, this was the year. Oh well....

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